OGDEN -- A potential developer of most of the property within the Ogden River Project area said Tuesday he wants to ensure the city doesn't give an unfair advantage to a competing developer.
"We all want to make sure it's a win-win for everyone," Steve Peterson, a principal with Millrock Capital, based in Holladay, said following a city council work session.
Peterson said he is confident his company has reached an agreement with Gadi Leshem -- whose firm, Ogden Riverfront Development, is the main owner of river project property -- to be the major partner in the river project.
Leshem also attended the work session but did not address the council and declined to comment at length following the meeting.
"I just came to say 'hi' (to the council)," he told the Standard-Examiner.
The river project area encompasses about 60 acres straddling the river from 18th to 20th streets and Washington Boulevard to Wall Avenue.
Peterson spoke to the city council briefly regarding a pending contract by Salt Lake City-based SouthRiver LLC to purchase about 6 acres from the Ogden Redevelopment Agency to construct 69 townhomes and commercial space within the project area.
SouthRiver is under contract to purchase RDA property for $1.3 million, according to a proposal from the corporation. The developer would pay $741,000 by July 30 and the balance of $559,000 through tax increment.
Tax increment financing is a tool that captures projected property tax revenue created by a development and then allows those funds to be invested for improvements associated with the project.
Peterson said he wants to ensure the RDA sells land to SouthRiver at fair market value to protect Millrock's planned investment in the river project.
He also promised that Millrock would cooperate with the city in bringing the mixed-use development to fruition.
"We want to work closely with the city," Peterson said.
Millrock has completed several projects, including Millrock Park, which includes four buildings in Holladay containing 490,000 square feet of class A office space. Peterson is not related to developer Chris Peterson, owner of Malan's Basin.
The RDA board, made up of the city council, may vote in May on whether to approve a development agreement with SouthRiver for the sale of the property.
Work on the SouthRiver development, which may start in June, would be the first of its kind in the Ogden River Project, which has been on the drawing board since 2002.
This topic is being discussed at the Weber County Forum.